Richard Artschwager - Biography

“Sculptures are for the touch, paintings for the eye” Artschwager says. “I wanted to make a sculpture for the eye and a painting for the touch.” Richard Artschwager combined approaches to painting and sculpture already in his early work. His distinctive tables, chairs and armchairs are furniture, sculpture and depiction at the same time, three-dimensional paintings that trigger thoughts about the sense and characteristics of these things. The artist is not interested in the item itself but its application in different contexts. However, he does not allow his art to be tied to functionality.

His motifs reach from architectonic constructions over fried eggs and potatoes to rat holes.

For the painter, sculptor and object artist, drawings are often the basis from which he develops cubic shapes. Simple geometric fields and spaces find functions, the boundaries between abstract and graphic depiction is abolished. The focus lies  on the  observer's perception and is constantly challenged by visual illusions. His motifs reach from architectonic constructions over fried eggs and potatoes to rat holes. Artschwager makes art from everything.


Born in 1923 in Washington D.C. to German-Russian parents, the US-American artist first studied mathematics and chemistry and started living of making furniture after his military service and further studies. Claes Oldenburg's “Bedroom Ensemble” for example was made in 1963 and is now part of the collection of the Museum for Modern Art in Frankfurt am Main. In the 1970s he dedicated himself more and more to his art which developed its completely unique style and cannot clearly be categorized. Pop art, minimal art, conceptual art or hyperrealism – all attempts to label his art failed. If a category was really necessary it would be context-art, the artist himself once said.

Richard Artschwager - art exhibitions

His work was part of the documenta in Kassel five times between 1968 and 1992. Artschwager lives in upstate New York.


You can buy works by Richard Artschwager in our shop.



Richard Artschwager - Sailors, 1972
Richard Artschwager - Live in Your Head, 2002
Richard Artschwager -

Richard Artschwager

Richard Artschwager